Wednesday, June 19, 2013

The Calorie Guilt Trip

I posted an article on Twitter this morning about Starbucks' plan to post calorie counts of their items on the menu boards of all locations beginning June 25. Since, I've seen a number of opinions shared on the announcement, ranging from applause to criticism.

Am I surprised at the number or nature of the opinions voiced? Abso-freaking-lutely not. Are you kidding? We're talking about Starbucks here. Not only are you affecting people's daily caffeine intake (no joking matter), but you're affecting their lifestyle. While yes, I consider myself to be a Starbucks fan, my love of that green mermaid pales in comparison to the gold-card status loyalty of others.

In a world where "healthy living" is being increasingly advocated for, something that is amplified ten times over in the blog world, most opinions I've read are in strong support of Starbucks move toward transparency. Hooray for calorie counting! (There's an app for that, BTW.) Hooray for Starbucks being held accountable for the nutrition of products!

On the other end of the spectrum, however, you have a number of grumbling customers who are not pleased that when they order a grande white chocolate mocha the world around them knows that, gasp, she's about to consume 400 calories! Ahhh, blissful ignorance.

So who then, exactly, are we trying to hold accountable here with this transparency? Is it really Starbucks? Or are we just mad because now we're forced to acknowledge that while, yes, it's been a rough afternoon and I simply need my Starbs to get through it - those 16 oz. of Caramel Frapuccino comfort are costing me 410 calories and 15 grams of fat.

I guess it all comes down to your lifestyle and your drink of choice. Personally, I don't venture to Starbucks all that often - primarily because I would go broke pretty darn quickly if it became a daily staple. That being said, when I do go, I tend to order a simple iced coffee or black tea lemonade (unsweetened)

Do I indulge? Duh. I'd be lying if I said I didn't treat myself to a peppermint mocha latte or five during the cold winter months, or a sweet and creamy iced caramel macchiato paired perfectly with a warm, sunny day. I'm not oblivious. I know very well that the perfection I'm sipping isn't without calorie-filled repercussions. I accept that... and know that I may need to tack on a few extra miles or crunches later as a result.

What do you think - yay or nay for listing calories?

Favorite indulgent treat from Starbucks?

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